How nutrition plays a role in your health

Grocery shopping cart conceptIn today’s world, we have access to a wider variety of food than at any other point in human history. However, the irony is that we have picked up unhealthy eating habits that have led to the proliferation of diseases of civilization, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and even cancer.

Your food choices each day play an impact on your health – how you feel today, how you will feel tomorrow, and far into the future. Why? The food we eat gives our body the materials and ‘information’ that ensure its proper functioning.

When the food we consume lacks all the necessary nutrients, some important information is not sent and it may result in several deficiencies. On the other hand, eating too much or consuming unhealthy sends the wrong message which leads to abnormal metabolic processes that can result in overweight and a couple of other diseases like diabetes.

These nutrients are the so-called ‘information’. Nutrients are nourishing substances essential for the growth, development, and maintenance of bodily functions. That’s why the role of nutrition cannot be overemphasized.

This post is going to explore the relationship between nutrition and some major chronic diseases.

Nutrition and Chronic Diseases

Many of the chronic health problems we face today can be linked to unhealthy eating habits. In America, over 78% of healthcare expenditures are for the treatment of chronic diseases. This is a fundamental societal problem considering that the United States ranks ninth in life expectancy among nations of the developed world. One major impact of poor nutrition in America is that we have a workforce plagued with absenteeism and reduced productivity due to chronic diseases.

Here are some of the major diseases we battle with as a society and now they can be ameliorated with proper nutrition.

Cardiovascular Disease

Do you know that heart disease is the number 1 killer of both men and women in America, killing about 647,000 people each year? Aside from unchangeable risk factors like age, and family history, it can also be caused by correctable problems like unhealthy diet, being overweight, lack of exercise, and smoking.

Heart disease results from the narrowing of the arteries that supply the heart with blood through a process known as atherosclerosis. Diet high in saturated fats and cholesterol increases the risk of blood clotting. Diets rich in sodium can cause high blood pressure which is a risk factor for heart disease. Consuming alcohol increases the chance of developing cardiovascular diseases.

Here are some healthy eating habits to adopt to reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease.

Pay attention to your calorie intake: Watch your calorie intake to ensure that you maintain a healthy weight, as obesity is associated with an increased risk of developing cardiovascular diseases. And by the way, about 40% of American adults are obese.

Do not consume food that is high in saturated and trans fat.

Limit red meat intake: Someone with a risk for heart disease should not obtain their protein from red meat. Rather, poultry, fish, and nuts are great alternatives. The omega-3 fatty acids in fish can help lower the risk of coronary artery disease.

Avoid Sugar: Simple sugar in beverages like soda and juice should be avoided as they provide no nutrients but add calories.

Diabetes

A report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) showed that over 100 million U.S. adults are living with diabetes or prediabetes. And as it stands, diabetes is the 7th in the leading causes of death in the United States.

Diabetes is caused when the body produces an insufficient amount of insulin or the body is unable to properly make use of the produced insulin. These two scenarios result in type 1 and type 2 diabetes respectively.

Many factors including genetics, exercise, and more influence diabetes, but food also plays a crucial role. A diet high in fat, calories, and cholesterol increases the risk of diabetes and other health problems.

Some eating advice that should be adopted by people with diabetes and people that want to lower their risk factor of having diabetes include:

Pay attention to the fat you consume: People with diabetes have a higher risk of heart disease. By limiting the amount of saturated and trans fat consumed, it significantly lowers their risk of heart attack and stroke.

Drastically limit red meat intake: plant-based protein sources like beans should be adopted, as well as poultry, eggs, and seafood.

Eat nutritious grains: Foods like whole oats, quinoa, whole-grain barley, and whole-grain popcorn (without butter) are healthy food choices.

Fruits are a must: To satisfy your sugar cravings, do so with fruits; preferably fresh fruits.

Eat nutrient-filled vegetables: Non-starchy veggies like broccoli, onion, green beans, and tomatoes are low in calories and carbohydrates, making them suitable for diabetics.

Lung Disease

Most people are surprised when they find out that the food they eat may affect their breathing. Well, when you think about it, the food serves as the fuel of the body; meaning it is responsible for providing the required nutrients to all body organs; including the lungs.

For people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), an inflammation in the lung that causes breathing problems, certain types of food can exacerbate their condition. Therefore, eating well is important. Overeating results in obesity which increase the pressure in the lungs.

Here are some nutrition tips for people diagnosed with COPD:

Eat complex carbohydrate: It can be found in foods like whole grains, fresh fruits, and veggies.

Simple carbohydrates found in soda, sweets, and candy should be avoided.

Incorporate between 20 to 30 grams of fiber into your daily diet: Foods rich in fiber include nuts, seeds, fruit, and vegetables.

Increase protein intake to strengthen the respiratory muscles.

Diets high in trans and saturated fat should be limited: Some example includes butter, crackers, and hydrogenated vegetable oil.

Conclusion

In reality, there a whole lot of other diseases that can be caused by poor nutrition. Some include:

  • Tooth decay
  • High blood pressure
  • Some types of cancer
  • Depression… and lots more.

Paying close attention to the food you consume can go a long way in helping you live a long and healthy life. Reach out to us today for more information.

Which type of meditation is right for you?

The potential benefits of meditation can be vast: less stress, improved cardiovascular health and increased self-awareness, to name a few. Meditation as a practice has been around since the prehistoric times, and while eastern holistic medicine has incorporated meditation into daily routines, it’s just starting to catch on in the west.31135020 - woman meditating practicing yoga outdoors

Meditation is a practice that spans cultures and religions. It is practiced by individuals from different economic, ethnic and educational backgrounds.

Quickly gaining in popularity, you might be curious how meditation would work for you. Here are five of the more popular types so you can decide.

Mindfulness meditation
This is the form of meditation you might be most familiar with, as it’s very popular in the west. In this type, become one with your mind and your breath. Your attention may wander at first, but bringing it back to center is what this form of meditation is all about.

Focused meditation
If you feel the need to be more attentive in your daily life, this form of meditation may be for you. It involves focusing on every aspect of a given item or activity with the intention of shutting off all other thoughts. Choose a target to focus on, get in a comfortable position, and let all other feelings escape.

Spiritual meditation
As the name suggests, this form of meditation is for those who seek spiritual growth and connection, whether that be to a higher power or nature.

Movement meditation
Movement meditation is all about focusing on the motion your body makes during an activity, like yoga. If you get anxious sitting during other types of meditation, this one can be appealing.

Transcendental meditation
The goal with this form is to transcend beyond your current state of being by breathing slowly. You might also have a mantra that you repeat for motivation and encouragement.

Remember that getting into the practice of meditation can take some time, but no matter which works best for you, meditation can help you live a healthier and happier life. When trying it out, enjoy the process and remain in the present.

Hormone decline in men

86083900 - testosterone deficiency conceptWith age, both men and women lose hormones in their bodies. It is a natural part of human aging. For women, this process is known as menopause. For the male counterpart, andropause. However, the awareness of hormone-decline in men as they age is not half as widespread as that in women.

Simply educating yourself in this natural process could mean the difference between sufficient, normal levels and rapid hormonal decline. Never become a bystander in the progression and evolution of your own health and well being. In this article, we talk about hormone decline in men as they age, its symptoms, and possible solutions for them to live a more fulfilling life even as they age.

Hormone Decline

Men possess the sex hormone testosterone that yields them masculine characteristics as they hit puberty. Development of sexual organs, penis and testes enlargement, sexual desires, facial and pubic hair, and body growth are some changes caused by testosterone at puberty.

These characteristics prevail throughout their life but towards old age, some men tend to face a decline in testosterone which causes age-related symptoms in them.

Note that, for men, the changes are not as sharp as that in women. When women experience menopause, there is a sharp decline in the production of estrogen and progesterone hormones in women. With men, these changes are slow and hard to notice.

Symptoms

Hormone decline in men causes a lot of gradual symptoms. These symptoms are both physical and mental.

Physical changes include low bone mineral density or low trauma fracture, fatigue, loss of energy, mood swings, erectile dysfunction (ED), decreased stamina, decreased urine flow, an increase and frequent urge to pee, breast enlargement, loss of physical agility, shrinkage of sexual organs, poor sleep quality or insomnia, accumulation of fat in the abdominal area, hair loss and patchy baldness, and night sweats

Mental and emotional changes include loss of activity, loss of mental sharpness, feeling lazy, low confidence, self-doubt, decreased motivation, depression, mood swings, anxiety, apathy, memory lapses, and short-temperedness.

As is apparent, some of these changes are so subtle that is hard to notice them. Some changes, however, are easily noticeable in a man’s day-to-day life. For instance, if you were a sound sleeper till now but are experiencing loss of sleep and mental peace due to no underlying reason whatsoever, then it can be due to hormonal loss. Or if you’re experiencing changes in your body structure such as a paunch or man boobs despite working out and eating healthy, you may want to have it checked by the doctor ones.

Checkups and Diagnosis

It is surprising that a simple blood test is all it takes to detect loss of testosterone in men. If a doctor decides to run by a regular checkup, loss of testosterone doesn’t go unnoticed. A man’s testosterone decreases by 1% yearly on an average after 40. Hence, it is best to have regular checkups in place to determine a sharp loss in testosterone levels and to overrule any other symptoms.

This being said, so many men with declining testosterone levels might not experience any symptoms at all. Or the symptoms of low testosterone are not limited to declining hormone levels.

Treatments

Thankfully, like most hormonal issues, medical science also has a solution for age-related hormone decline in men. Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT) refers to a wide variety of methods involving pills, injections, tablets, and psychological help to restore the confidence and girth in aging men.

The Bioidentical Hormonal Replacement Therapy (BHRT) aims to replace hormones physiologically to restore hormone levels in men.

No matter which of these treatment options you chose, they are all beneficial in restoring hormone levels in some way. These treatments have been known to improve sexual performance in aging men, increase bone health, enhance sex drives, stop balding and make hair treatments more effective, improve mood and confidence, improve energy levels, yield sharp memory, and improves heart health.

Conclusion

The field of restoring hormonal imbalance in aging men is still in its developing stages. However, there are ample evidences to show that these treatments work effectively and restore quality of life. There have also been rumors that such treatments cause cancer but supporting evidence to prove this are far and few.

If you are an aging man suffering from any of these symptoms, don’t be taken aback. Consider having routine tests done to check your testosterone levels. Talk to your doctor about the possible treatment solutions. With help, you can get back in control of your life and lead a healthy life even as you age.

We understand that a realization such as this can be an overwhelming “pill” to swallow – but there’s proven steps that can be taken to mitigate any unwarranted decline in hormone levels. We’re here to help. Contact us today for more information.

How to maintain healthy gut health

Did you know that your gut houses the majority of the cells that make up your immune system? That explains why inflammation happens in your stomach when you aren’t feeling well. Maintaining gut health is essential to a whole body approach to healing. 40185967_M

Having a healthy gut means having a healthy body, and a strong immune system. But how do you get there? It’s easier than you may think.

First, start with food. Your gut is largely affected by the foods you eat, so identifying food intolerances might be a good place to start your journey towards healing.

Typical culprits: sugar, dairy and gluten.

No matter what you discover, a diet rich in fiber and plant-based foods is usually a really good idea. Leafy green vegetables provide vitamin K, which is linked to multiple health benefits, including the prevention of inflammatory diseases and the proliferation of good bacteria. Eat more and your gut will thank you.

To continue to make your gut happy, consider taking a probiotic. Probiotics work to help your gut maintain equilibrium and a microbial balance. Contrary to popular belief, you do not have to take a supplement to get your dose of probiotics (although you could!); you can also supply yourself with some of the good stuff by eating fermented foods. One of the most common fermented foods is yogurt, or you can try kimchee, pickles or kombucha.

The key to maintaining great gut health doesn’t just lie in the gut itself, but in your habits and lifestyle. Are you stressed? Are you getting enough sleep? Feeling stressed can trigger immune responses that cause inflammation in your gut, among other body organs, and potentially cause immune diseases. So, lower your stress for strong gut health and keep your microbiome happy.

When it comes to sleep, studies show that having insomnia or a broken sleep cycle can affect your intestinal microbes, making them unhappy and prone to inflammation. Getting consistent sleep can create a nice balance.

Because whole-body health is largely impacted by our gut, maintaining a healthy gut is critical. Follow these steps and see the wonders that is complete gut happiness.

Lyme disease – causes and prevention

27280556_SThe history of Lyme disease can be traced to rural Connecticut. In 1975, a cluster of children and adults residing in Lyme, Connecticut developed atypical arthritic symptoms. Within the next two years, the first 51 cases of Lyme arthritis were recorded. More importantly, the transmission of the disease was linked to the Ixodes scapularis (black-legged) tick. Today, about 30,000 cases of Lyme disease are reported to the CDC in the US every year. Some estimates place the ‘actual cases’ to be as high as 300,000, making Lyme disease the most common vector-borne disease in the United States. In this article, we’re going to explore what causes Lyme disease and how to prevent yourself from it.

What causes Lyme Disease?

Lyme disease is an infectious caused by the Borrelia bacterium. In the United States, Borrelia burgdorferi and Borrelia mayonii may cause it, while Borrelia afzelii and Borrelia garinii are the main causes of Lyme disease in Europe and Asia.

While these bacteria naturally reside in birds, deer, squirrels, mice, and other small animals, ticks become infected after they feed on infected animals. Since ticks are as small as a pinhead, they’re very difficult to spot.

Once an infected tick bites you, the bacteria permeate through the skin until it reaches the bloodstream. For transmission of the Lyme disease to be successful, the deer tick has to be attached to your skin for up over 36 hours.

Since ticks spend up to two hours on a host’s body before attaching themselves, quickly removing tick reduces the risk of infection. However, if you locate a swollen tick attached to your body, it’s a strong indication it has fed on your blood for long. If it’s an infected tick, there’s a greater chance of infection.

Risk Factors

Contrary to popular belief, ticks do not live on their host. Instead, they live close to their host so that they can attach themselves whenever they want to feed and detach themselves once done. The following are some of the common risk factors:

Staying for too long in wooded and grassy areas

Ticks are commonly found in wooded and grassy areas because of its humid and moist environment. Therefore, if you live in these kinds of places and you spend a long time outdoors, there’s an increased risk. So, activities like hunting, camping, and hiking are risk factors.

Exposing your skin

Ticks cannot fly or jump. Instead, they rub off your body as you wander past tall weeds and grasses. Having your bare flesh exposed in a tick-infested area significantly increases the risk of infection.

Prolonged attachment of ticks

The longer the tick stays attached, the higher the risk of transmission. If you’re able to spot and remove the tick from your body in less than 36 hours, it’s unlikely that you contract Lyme disease.

Symptoms

Lyme disease generally occurs in three stages which include:

Stage 1: Early Localized Infection

At this stage, the infection is still localized and hasn’t spread throughout the body. After being bitten by an infected tick, after about one to two weeks, a bull’s eye rash begins to appear at the site of this bite. However, in a few instances, it might appear elsewhere. This rash is formally called Erythema migrans(EM) and about 80% of Lyme infection cases experience it. It’s usually not painful or itchy.

Other symptoms that may arise at this stage include:

Fever, sore throat, fatigue, headaches, chills, enlarged lymph nodes, vision changes.

Stage 2: Early Disseminated Infection

This stage begins several weeks or months after the tick bite. The infection begins to spread to other areas of the body, explaining why rash might appear in other areas than the bite spot. Also, there’s a general sense of uneasiness in the patient. Common symptoms include:

1) Disruption in heart rhythm

2) Neurological conditions like numbness, cranial nerve palsy, and meningitis.

3) Multiple erythema migrans.

Stage 3: Late Disseminated Lyme Disease

If treatment hasn’t been received, the condition devolves into stage 3. Stage 3 can begin years after a tick bite. Common symptoms include:

1) Numbness in arms and legs; hands and feet.

2) Arthritis of multiple joints

3) Brain disorders like short-term memory loss, mental fogginess, and sleep disturbance.

It is crucial to note that these boundaries aren’t clear-cut. The symptoms you experience depends on several factors like your health history, and can widely vary or even overlap.

Prevention

Preventing Lyme Disease is as easy as keeping ticks off of your body. That means staying clear of tick-infested areas, especially wooded areas or bushy areas with long grass. Here are some major things to keep in mind to help with that.

Cover your body when going outdoors

When moving in bushy or wooded areas, ensure that you wear a long-sleeved shirt, long pants tucked in your socks, shoes, a hat, and gloves. Always stay along the trail and keep your dog on a leash so it doesn’t wander through low bushes and long grass.

Make your yard unattractive to ticks.

Ensure that you keep underbrush to a minimum. Mow your lawn regularly. Store woodpiles in sunny areas to discourage tick-carrying rodents.

Apply Insect Repellents

Using insect repellent to your skin will help keep ticks off. Once applied, you’d be protected for a couple of hours. DO NOT apply repellents on your children’s face and hands.

The oil of lemon eucalyptus is also a good repellent but it isn’t suitable for children under the age of three.

Be Vigilant!

Always be on alert anytime you’re in a tick-infested area. Since ticks are so tiny, spotting them can be challenging. That’s when you come back indoors, take a shower within the next hour. Within this time, the tick wouldn’t have attached itself to your body, so showering can help remove unattached ticks.

What To Do If You Find A Tick Attached To You Skin.

Remove It with Tweezers

If you find a tick on your body, put tweezers near the head of the rick and gently pull it out. Sometimes, only part of the tick gets detached. That’s why you have to check to ensure that all parts, including the head, have been removed. Thereafter, you can flush the tick down the toilet or drown it in alcohol.

After removing the tick, cleanse the area with alcohol or mild soap and water. Then thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water.

Seek Medical Attention

If you suspect that the tick has stayed on your body for long, or you begin to develop a rash or other symptoms, get medical attention. At the early stages, common antibiotics like doxycycline, amoxicillin or cefuroxime, are sufficient to stop it from spreading.

Remember that the key is to act promptly to avoid serious complications! Also, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us for more information. We look forward to helping you!

What does our gut bacteria have to do with lupus?

61378324_MWe already know a great deal about how the bacteria that live on and within us play a huge role in our overall level of health and wellness. They are more than just simple passengers along for the ride. They play a critical symbiotic relationship with the rest of our bodies by interacting with our cells and playing host to many vital bodily functions.

Now, researchers are discovering that our gut bacteria may play a role in the autoimmune disease systemic lupus erythematosus. More commonly known as lupus, this is an autoimmune disease associated with many different systems that occurs when the body’s immune system attacks healthy tissue and causes joint problems, tiredness, and rashes. Pain is associated with inflammation of the kidney, lungs, and even brain.

For a long time, little was known about what caused lupus, but a new study published in the journal Science Translational Medicine finds that one of the potential contributing factors might be the bacteria in the gut. While researchers have not stated gut bacteria may be the primary cause, factors associated with it may play a part in aggravating the condition.

The mechanism governing the actions behind lupus is the Ro60 protein, which can be found in some bacteria that lives in soil. When lupus flares up, it attacks this protein. When researchers examined whether gut bacteria produce this protein they discovered it does. For those who have lupus, the presence of Ro60 might trigger an immune response.

Researchers took bacteria that produce a similar protein in mice bred without gut bacteria. The resulting reaction was like what is seen in people who have lupus. Until now it has been assumed that lupus results from a combination of genetics, hormones, and environmental factors. It could be that those who have a genetic susceptibility to the Ro60 hormone may also be at greater risk, as the presence of this protein will put their immune system into overdrive.

As researchers continue to find the triggers responsible for autoimmune and other chronic conditions, it is likely that answers will likely continue coming from unexpected places.

How advanced peptides can aid in healing and restoration

95130023 - red heart with stethoscope, heart health,  health insurance conceptEver since the advent of insulin therapy in the 1920s, peptide therapeutics have continued to play a crucial role in medical practices. From its ability to cure bones, to its ability to act as a skin anti-aging agent, peptides have exploded in popularity.

Peptide drug discovery that was once focused on endogenous human peptides has advanced to identify peptides from many other natural sources and even medicinal chemistry approaches. Today, the United States has approved over 60 peptide drugs and over 150 have entered the human clinical trial stage. However, in recent decades, a new wave of advanced peptides that promise healing and restoration in an unprecedented manner is rising.

What exactly are peptides? How do they function? What makes them suitable for use? Do they have any associated side effects?

What Are Peptides?

Peptides are short chains of between 2 and 50 amino acids, linked by peptide bonds. Since proteins consist of over 50 amino acids, peptides can be seen as a shorter version of proteins. Like proteins, peptides are biological molecules that are produced from the transcription of a sequence of genetic code.

Every cell and tissue in a human body contains protein and peptides that perform a wide range of functions. Millions of proteins buzzing in the body serve as the machinery that directs chemical reactions, gives cell their shapes, and even help to transport useful materials around the body. However, they are limited for some functions due to their large molecule size.

Due to their diminutive size, peptides are suitable for targeting at a cellular level, making them important biological entities capable of killing microbes, treating diseases, reversing aging, reducing inflammation, bone regeneration, among many others. Scientists are only beginning to unlock the full potential of bio-active peptides.

Healing and Restoration Abilities of Advanced Peptides

Peptides have been applied to several aspects of regenerative medicine because of three major properties:

  1. Peptides can easily target a single receptor on a specific tissue with impressive accuracy.
  2. They aren’t metabolized in the liver or kidney. This prevents unwanted interactions that are associated with metabolism type drugs.
  3. They are highly selective in function, with minimal side effects.

Here are five areas where peptides have seen great advances.

Increasing Growth Hormones

Peptides like Sermorelin, GHRP 2, and GHRP 6 have long been used for increasing growth hormone levels. High growth hormone helps to maintain, build, and repair healthy tissue in the body’s organs. Advanced peptides that now finding application in this niche include:

CJC 1295 and Ipamorelin

These advanced peptides are suited for increasing growth hormone levels and Insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1).

CJC 1295 stimulates growth hormone (GH )secretion and its benefits include protein synthesis, reduced body fat, improved recovery, and better immune. CJC 1295 is the next generation Sermorelin – similar in structure but more effective with smaller doses.

Ipamorelin is one of the safest GH restoration used for GH deficiency treatment protocols. Unlike GHRP 6, Ipamorelin doesn’t affect the release of cortisol, aldosterone, prolactin, and acetylcholine, therefore minimizing potential side effects.

Some of the benefits of CJC 1295 and Ipamorelin include:

  • Improved energy and strength
  • Decreased body fat.
  • Increased muscle mass.
  • Enhances calcium retention.
  • Increases physical and mental performance.
  • Healthier and youthful skin.
  • Improved sexual performance.

By the time we’re 40, our growth hormone levels begin to drop. These peptides hold the promise for us to beat the susceptibilities that are associated with old age.

Anti-Aging

One key feature of old age is the deterioration of the skin. Naturally, the body produces collagen – a protein type – that helps to strengthen the skin. However, we lose 1% of our remaining collagen per year after we reach the age of 30. By slathering peptides into your skin, it signals the body to heal itself by producing more collagen where it’s most needed. That’s why a plethora of skin-care products contain peptides.

Some peptides – referred to as hexapeptides – can relax the facial muscle, thereby minimizing the formation of wrinkles. Other peptides like palmitoyl tetrapeptide-7 and oligopeptide are better suited for stimulating skin growth and repair, protection against UV damage, and fighting inflammation. Melanotan II is an advanced peptide that also provides safe tanning of the skin.

Increasing Libido

Hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD) is a form of sexual dysfunction that results in a long term disinterest in sex. People with high HSDD tend to have lower libido which negatively impacts their sexual relationship with their partners.

Peptides are have also been found to enhance the sexual drive in both men and women. Some examples include:

Melanotan II

Originally tested for its ability to serve as a sunless tanning agent, Melanotan II also demonstrated the ability to stimulate sexual desires. This peptide is administered via injection into the skin. It increases libido through the brain. It increases the desire to have sex in women and it also helps men to achieve stronger erections. Minor side effects may include nausea and headaches.

Bremelanotide

This peptide is similar to Melanotan II, except that it isn’t suited for skin tanning. Bremelanotide is also injected into the skin. Within 45 minutes, its libido-enhancing effects start to become visible. Bremelanotide has been extensively tested and is very safe with minimal or no side effects.

Restoring Immune Function

The immune system is crucial for helping the body fight against diseases. One common peptide that helps to restore immune function is Thymosin a1.

Thymosin a1

It restores and regulates immune function by augmenting T-cell function. T-cells are one of the main components of the adaptive immune system that aid in killing infected host cells, activating other immune cells, and regulating immune responses.

Patients with CIRS or Lyme have an unstable immune function and Thymosin a1 can be beneficial in helping them regulate the immune system and increase melanocyte-stimulating hormones (MSH).

Bone Healing and Regeneration

Over the past few decades, bone tissue engineering research has shown several peptides to support and stimulate bone healing responses. One common example is BPC-157.

BPC-157

BPC-157 is a synthetic peptide, whose peptide chain consists of 15 amino acids. Research has shown that BPC-157 has regenerative effects that can help to accelerate bone and joint healing and growth rate. For instance, experiments have confirmed its ability to help heal transected rat Achilles tendon.

Moreover, BPC-157 has been shown to benefit ulcers in the stomach, intestinal damage such as fistulas and inflammatory disorders.

Conclusion

Advanced peptides are becoming more important because of their ability to help with a wide array of medical conditions. Because of their preciseness in targeting specific cells on the tissue, their side effects are generally minimal. We are just at the beginning of a thousand-mile journey in understanding the full potential of peptides and harnessing its power to further improve the quality of life of the human species.

At Proactive Wellness Centers we understand how confusing health and well-being can be for an individual to fully comprehend. Let us simplify the process for you. Reach out to us today for more information.

The importance of slowing down

We are busier now more than ever. We take on more responsibility and sign up for more projects. We try to fit 36 hours worth of activities and tasks into a 24-hour period and wonder at the end of the day why we feel so drained. ????????????????????????????????????It’s not just the physical either.

Do you feel rushed throughout the day, sometimes for no apparent reason? It’s like our brains can’t just turn off; constant stimulation is something we are subconsciously striving for. But, do you ever think of how nice it would be to just take in our surroundings?

Slow down and take a moment to truly appreciate the world around us with these tips:

1. Remember that energy is finite.
Simply understanding that we don’t have to always be full of energy is beneficial enough. Allow yourself to relax knowing that your energy has a limit, but you don’t always have to get there.

2. Know that you don’t have to do it all.
There is a societal pressure to “do it all,” sometimes at our own detriment. Learn to delegate or even to let things go until another day and time.

3. Prioritize the right things.
Do you find yourself performing tasks or doing other activities and then feeling stressed at the end of the day when you didn’t accomplish what was most important? It happens, and now is the time to start prioritizing appropriately.

4. Stop and smell the roses…literally.
Take a walk in a garden, smell the flowers, and live technology-free while doing so. Studies show that performing this action actually helps you find satisfaction in life by teaching you about appreciation.

Slowing down and taking inventory of everything you have to be grateful for can do wonders for your psyche. It’s important to care for your soul and spirit so you can live with more intention and in the moment.

Leveraging genetic data for disease prevention

7544773_SFor years, genetic data has provided valuable insights into a range of diseases, from cognition and psychiatric disorders, inherited disorders such as Down Syndrome and Tay-Sachs disease, and more.

As such, genetic testing has gained rapid popularity for finding answers to one of the most targeting and focused issues that humans face – disease prevention.

What are Genetics and Genomics?

Genetics can be defined as the study of heredity. In other words, Genetics are traits that are passed down from one generation to another.

Genomics, on the other hand, is a branch of molecular biology that includes the genes and gene products of an individual. Here, genes are analyzed on their behavior with the environment and themselves.

How are Genetic tests done?

Blood samples, skin, hair, or other tissue are used to perform genetic tests. Depending on the suspected disorder, these samples are scrutinized by laboratory experts to detect abnormal chromosomes changes, proteins, or DNA. These tests can identify genetic conditions and an individual’s risk of developing or passing a genetic disorder in the future. There are over 1,000 genetic tests such as molecular genetic tests, chromosomal genetic tests, and biochemical genetic tests.

Is Genetic Data really useful?

In short? Yes.

Genetic data is considered a powerful source to manage and care for people who have common diseases and inherited diseases. Researchers spend a lot of effort to study genetics in order to increase knowledge regarding diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and obesity.

Genetic nature is defined from the day a baby is born. These genetic contributions remain until death. Therefore, using genetic data can be used to pinpoint diseases in the early stages. As a result, genetic data has become more fruitful than conventional methods such as testing blood pressure or glucose levels.

Impact of Genetic Data towards disease prevention

When someone is given a particular drug treatment, they respond differently from one another. This way the drugs’ potential can be authenticated depending on the person. This genetic variation study is called Pharmacogenomics.

This is the most reliable proof that genomics’ contribution towards creating individualized treatments and developing clinical care. Not only now, but even in the past, genetic data has been proven to impact the accuracy of finding correct medications for people. For instance, the studies between genetic variants and drug responses have managed to discover Warfarin. Warfarin is a powerful anticoagulant medication that has been recognized to prevent stroke and venous thromboembolism. Not to mention, this medication is prescribed worldwide.

Thanks to pharmacogenomics, medicine labeling has been updated with more accurate information as well. For example, Irinotecan, which is used as an anti-cancer chemotherapy drug, and variations in the gene UGT1A1 were tested. A dosing reduction label update was suggested according to the data. Genetic data revealed that patients with certain genotypes are prone to the risk of neutropenia (a condition where a person’s white blood cell count is abnormally low). Another example is the genotyping of variants in HLA-B*1502, which can potentially identify patients who are at risk for rare and fatal skin diseases such as Stevens-Johnson syndrome and toxic epidermal necrolysis.

New medical discoveries from Genetic Data

  1. Prevention of Preeclampsia and Eclampsia

A research team at Baylor College of Medicine has discovered that certain maternal and fetal gene variants are more prone to preeclampsia. Preeclampsia leads to organ dysfunction in mothers and growth complications in babies. This happens because of blood pressure rising up suddenly. If this instantaneous elevation of blood pressure isn’t controlled, disorders such as eclampsia can threaten the life of the patient with fatal seizures. Preeclampsia and Eclampsia are responsible for 10% – 15% maternal deaths.

The causes of Preeclampsia are still unknown and this is among one of the most difficult conditions to predict. However, this particular research conducted by the Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology at Baylor suggests that this genetic signature can potentially support women who are at risk. Moreover, this condition can be prevented by prior preparation.

  1. Breast Cancer prevention

Major Genetic study done by involving more than 450 departments and institutions from all over the world has discovered that some women with particular DNA are at a higher risk than others to have breast cancer in the future. According to Dr. Laura Fachal from the Wellcome Sanger Institute, the studies that had been conducted in the past revealed that DNA plays a huge role in breast cancer. However, it is important to gather the exact genes that are involved. This new study, on the other hand, was conducted by looking into 110,000 breast cancer patients. After the DNA comparison of these patients, researchers identified 352 risk variants. Although the exact number of targeted genes is unclear, they found 191 genes. The crucial point is, per five genes that are newly discovered, less than one had been previously identified and studied.

According to Dr. Alison Dunning from the University of Cambridge, this new study led the researchers to acquire a more intricate map of what causes and develops breast cancer. This genetic study has opened the doctors and clinicians the path of providing women a clear picture of their level of risk towards breast cancer. Knowing the genetic risk, prevention can be started sooner than before.

  1. Preventing blindness

As stated by Koji Nishiguchi, associate professor in the Department of Advanced Ophthalmic Medicine at Tohoku University Graduate School of Medicine, they have managed to develop a new gene therapy to treat blinded mice. Mice that are affected by inherited retinal degeneration were used in the experiment. The results showed a great deal of visual restoration in them. This study has assured this method’s potential for clinical application for humans with similar conditions.

Nishiguchi’s team is planning to have a clinical trial for the new therapy that is being developed to treat humans with retinitis pigmentosa by 2025. Retinitis pigmentosa is a rare condition that causes peripheral vision loss and difficulties to see clearly at night. This particular therapy will target the patients who couldn’t overcome the disease with conventional gene therapy.

Conclusion

Undoubtedly, Genetic Data studies have supported disease prevention in the past. Now, with the pre-eminent science and technology, it’s just a matter of time until the researchers develop directive medications for diseases.

We understand that the study of genetics can be an overwhelming topic of undertaking and we’re here to help. Please contact us today for more information.

 

Functional medicine is about bringing together multiple disciplines

44485807_MOne of the biggest criticisms of western medicine is that it’s slow to progress and that it takes an all-too-skeptical view of other approaches such as Eastern medicine, the traditions of Native Peoples and other practices not typically enshrined in the canon of western medicine.

Yet, if there is one thing that drives functional, integrative, naturopathic, and other ‘alternative’ medicinal treatment providers more than anything else, it is the desire to continually push forward, not get complacent or too comfortable with the status quo, and always be cognizant of the fact that no one has all the answers, in any situation.

It’s not about having the answers. It’s not about “fixing” the problem, but rather digging down and finding the root cause of the patient’s ailment. That’s what functional medicine does.

Fortunately, many practitioners of functional, and other, methods of treating illness themselves transitioned from the world of traditional Western medicine. They understand that we all must work together for the betterment of the citizenry we serve.

In the age of social media and instantaneous communication, it isn’t difficult to get caught up in the overheated hyperbole of the situation, but it is important to step back and have an objective look at the facts. The doctors and nurses working in these fields are taking the risk of being seen as an outlier, but even more are assuming the risk that comes with operating within a new frontier of medicine.

While this may place practitioners, researchers, university professors, and many more who are studying the efficacy of alternative approaches in an unwanted spotlight, it isn’t warranted. Approaches taught in the offices of functional, integrative, and naturopathic clinics around the world are receiving the attention they deserve. The more research, the better, and professionals from all disciplines must work together.

So next time someone writes off functional medicine as “new age” or “hippie healing,” point them to this article to show them that functional medicine brings together a multitude of disciplines and philosophies to heal the individual, not just to temporarily “fix” the problem.